Anti-inflammatory Foods

Anti-inflammatory and Antioxidant Rich Thai Broccoli Fish Stew

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This anti-inflammatory and antioxidant-rich Thai Broccoli Fish Stew is the perfect combination of tangy & savory – a soup that will please even those who are picky about seafood! The spicy red curry paste along with creamy coconut milk make a delicious broth for poaching broccoli and salmon. The recipe comes together in less than 45 minutes – quick enough for weeknight dinners and approved by Nutrition Therapists for the nutrient-dense and health-boosting ingredients!

Why we love it

Perhaps you are a proud owner of a diverse and eclectic pantry, or perhaps some of the ingredients in this recipe are items you have never cooked with. If the latter is true, I highly recommend picking up these versatile condiments to add some umami-rich flavors to your dishes!

Red curry paste: The basic ingredients in a red curry paste include dried red chili peppers, garlic, white peppercorns, fresh lemongrass, galangal, and shrimp paste. It’s no surprise that the combination of hot peppers, garlic and galangal is considered anti-inflammatory with high antioxidant properties.

Ume plum vinegar: A staple in Japanese cuisine, ume plum vinegar is the by-product of the pickling of umeboshi plums – the vinegar is the liquid brine left over after pickling the plums. A 2015 study indicated that daily intake of umeboshi plums improved motility and reduced symptoms of acid reflux. Utilizing ume plum vinegar may be a helpful nutrition therapy tool for clients struggling with indigestion and low stomach acidity! The vinegar can be drizzled on cooked vegetables, salads, added to dips and sauces, and used in stews like this Thai Broccoli Fish Stew.

Tamari: This is a gluten-free alternative to soy sauce. Similarly to soy sauce, tamari is a condiment made from fermented soybeans. Unlike soy sauce, no wheat is added to tamari during processing. Make sure to purchase organic tamari and soy sauce, since over 90% of the soy in the US is GMO and heavily sprayed with pesticides. If avoiding soy, coconut aminos is a great substitute.

Fish Sauce: Fermentation is an ancient practice, and yes, even fish can be fermented! Fish sauce provides the savory taste of umami, which increases the overall enjoyment of a meal. Fermenting and aging foods has long been used to increase glutamate concentration and enhance umami flavor.

Thai Broccoli Fish Stew

Thai Broccoli Fish Stew in a blue pot on a marble counter top


2 tbsp olive, avocado or coconut oil

1 large onion, finely diced

½ cup tightly packed fresh cilantro, finely chopped

¼ cup plus 2 tbsp red curry paste

2 tsp ume plum vinegar

1 tbsp gluten-free tamari (can also use soy sauce or coconut aminos)

1 tbsp garlic, minced

5 cups broccoli, chopped into small bite-sized pieces

4 cups (32 oz) vegetable or chicken broth

1 can full-fat unsweetened coconut milk

2 tbsp lime juice

3 tbsp fish sauce

10oz baby spinach

1lb boneless, skinless wild-caught salmon, cut into 1-inch cubes

½ cup sliced green onions

⅓ cup minced fresh mint

1 lime, quartered


  1. Heat the oil in a large pot over medium heat. Add the diced onion and cook for about 5 minutes. Add the cilantro, curry paste, ume vinegar, and tamari, stir, and let cook for 2 minutes. Add the garlic and broccoli and stir so that the broccoli is well coated, then add the broth.
  2. Continue cooking over medium heat until the broccoli is tender, about 7 minutes. Stir in coconut milk, lime juice, and fish sauce.
  3. Completely submerge all the baby spinach in the soup, then add the salmon and simmer until cooked through, about 6-8 minutes.
  4. Serve the soup right away, garnishing each portion with green onions, mint, and a lime wedge. Best served fresh.

Makes 4-6 servings

Recipe adapted from “Food: What the Heck Should I Cook?” by Mark Hyman

Looking for more salmon recipes?

Try the Roasted Miso-Pomegranate Salmon, Quinoa Beet Salad with Salmon, Salmon Ochazuke, Fresh Salmon Quinoa Burgers, and the Refreshing Salmon Summer Salad.

P.S. If you want to learn more about why fatty fish like salmon are the most bioavailable source of Omega-3s, check out the blog post about the different types of Omega-3s. A nutrition therapy program, such as the Nutrition Therapist Master program at NTI, provides an evidence-based nutrition education to make sure our grads understand the nuances of nutrient bioavailability. 

Want to learn how to create and prepare recipes like this?

Join our Natural Food Chef Program! Picture yourself in your kitchen surrounded by nothing but organic vegetables, whole grains, top-quality meats, eggs and a range of the more unusual things like pâté, kimchi, kefir and bone broth. If you resonate with the idea of creating delicious meals that are not only healthy but downright regenerative, then join us for our 15-week Natural Chef program! Reach out to our Admissions team with any questions about the NFC program: ad********@nt*******.com

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About the author: Daina Rasutis is a graduate of NTI’s Nutrition Therapist Master Program. Her background in Environmental Engineering has allowed her to combine the best of science with a love for nutrition, sustainability & delicious food. Follow Daina’s cooking creations and lifestyle tips on her website:

Images by Daina Rasutis

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